Bedi expressed regret, put issue to rest: Rajnath

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. PTI file photo

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday appealed to the opposition, particularly the DMK, to put to rest the controversy over a tweet by Puducherry LG Kiran Bedi, saying she has deleted it and expressed deep regret.

Singh's comments came after DMK leader T R Baalu raised the issue for the second consecutive day in Lok Sabha and said the matter has triggered outrage in Tamil Nadu as it was insulting to Tamil society and state politicians.

The defence minister said Bedi has already deleted the tweet and issued a statement expressing deep regret.

Singh said when the matter was raised in Parliament by Baalu, the Ministry of Home Affairs took notice of it and took necessary action in this regard.

Singh said she has expressed deep regret by saying, "What was written was a people perspective shared in my personal capacity, as it came at a time when people were hugely suffering for water in Chennai. However, I admit it was avoidable. And I should not have shared it in public in this manner and I too realised it."

"I have therefore deleted my sharing. I have the highest regards and warmth for the people of Tamil Nadu like I have for the people of Puducherry," Singh quoted Bedi's statement.

The defence minister said in view of the LG's statement, he would like to request members of the House to put the issue to rest.

Earlier, raising the issue during Zero Hour, Baalu said the LG's comments on Twitter were without any provocation and generated a strong reaction in Tamil Nadu.

In her now-deleted tweet, Bedi on Sunday blamed the water crisis in Tamil Nadu on "poor governance, corrupt politics, indifferent bureaucracy with the highly selfish and cowardly attitude of the people".

DMK MP Dayanidhi Maran thanked Singh for his reply on the issue of LG Bedi's "hurtful comments" against the Tamil people.

Singh has said that "Since she has apologised and assured that such incidents will not occur again let us leave it at that.

"I hope that henceforth the government adopts the same attitude in dealing with matters of dissent and voices of opposition as well," Maran said in the House.

He also posted his comments on Twitter.

After Singh's statement, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury demanded the House should adopt a resolution condemning Bedi for allegedly humiliating the people of Tamil Nadu.

Asaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM said that a constitutional head cannot have a personal opinion.

However, Speaker Om Birla moved to the next subject. 

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